17 August 2007
Potato farmer seeks compensation
A farmer who lost his livelihood following the outbreak of a highly infectious disease on his potato crop is appealing for compensation, the BBC reports.
The outbreak of potato ring rot in 2004 at John Morgan's farm in Bwlch, near Brecon in Wales, cost £1.25 million and he has remained out of business ever since.
Thought to have been imported from the Netherlands, this incident was the first time the disease, described as the potato equivalent of foot and mouth, has been found in Britain.
Mr Morgan's farm was placed under restrictions and he was ordered to destroy 1,500 tonnes of potatoes to prevent further infection.
He is now seeking compensation for his expenses and lost earnings.
A spokesman for the Welsh Assembly commented: "Welsh Assembly Government officials have continually met with the farmer to keep abreast of the case during legal proceedings and have now received a claim for compensation, which is under consideration."
Potato ring rot is a bacterial infection and is found in parts of North America as well as northern and eastern Europe.